Thursday, March 19, 2009

"Don't Hold Your Breath"

"The main problem, he said, is that Damascus is never in a hurry, while Washington always is..."

A recent article in the BBC was full of classic quotes from different players in the Syrian-US Politcal theater ... Here are a few that I found amusing >>
  • "The Iranians could take 20 years to weave a carpet ... And the Syrians would say to them: Don't rush, we have plenty of time. But the Americans want to eat their hamburger in three minutes and move on."

An existential problem to say the least . . .

  • "George Bush's plan failed, Syria won and Syrians now feel that their policies were correct all along..."

What exactly did we win? A medal? A gift-certificate? A new car?

  • "I think beneath the bravado, Syria is in fact uncomfortable with Iran and that both President al-Assad and his people would prefer to look to the West," (the former US ambassador to Israel) says.

Compass references (East/West) are meaningless ... I mean technically, Iran is "look(ing) to the West" when it allies with Syria ... isn't it?

  • "Two years ago George Bush decided to ban me from entering America and to freeze my assets in the States. I laughed: I have nothing to lose in America."

I am tempted to say "ignorance is bliss" ... but i'm afraid that would be ... blissful ?

  • "People in the region understand that the US policy has been very fickle"

If by "fickle" he means - aggressive, one-sided, & misguided - say word.

  • "Obama's silence on Gaza was noted in the region ..."
Sad but true ... you all know how much I respect The Man ... but this was weak. Especially since his rationale was the whole "one president at a time" thing - while he went out of his way to condemn the attacks in Mumbai just months before ...
  • But when it comes to real changes no-one in the Middle East is holding their breath.

SyrianamericanA in a pistachio-nutshell my people ...

(Pray for &) 3iiish P E A C E

Thursday, March 12, 2009


"It is music which feeds my creativity while I am lost in the world of colours in my studio for endless hours each day..."

- Madny Al Bakry

As a kid, I used to love visiting my Omani friend Layth's house ... Much of his family had grown up in East Africa (Tanzania / Kenya / Zanzibar) & this had a very strong influence on their traditions at home. They spoke Swahili, cooked East African food, & adorned the walls with vibrant Afro-Arab paintings by his maternal uncle Madny. The colors used to literally jump off the page & the best word I could use to describe them was "fresh" - both in the literal & hip-hop sense of the word ... He depicted everything from fisherman & sunsets, to spectacular calligraphy the likes of which I had never seen ...

I recently had the pleasure of reuniting with Layth after several years apart & he was quick to inform me that his uncle had put up a website to display his unique work. While it doesn't showcase any of his land/seascape paintings - it does display a number of his calligraphy pieces ... I was pleased to see that he decided to call them "Calligraffiti" as this only reaffirmed their freshness to me ...

So without further ado ladies & gentlemen, I present to you the fantastic work of Mr. Madny Al Bakry >>

3iiish (a fresh) Peace!